James Cameron breaks record as Avatar 2 breaks $2 billion

Jake Sully brings his family to the Metkayina clan in Avatar: The Way of Water.  (20th century studies)

Avatar: The Way of Water (20th Century Studios)

Avatar: The Way Of Water turned James Cameron into a record-breaking director as the fantasy film surpassed $2 billion at the box office.

The fantasy franchise – a sequel to the 2009 original – has become the sixth highest-grossing film of all time, with superfans desperate to catch up with the Na’vi as they fight to save their planet from humans.

Read more: The cast of Avatar 2: the stars of Meet the Way of Water as the sci-fi sequel finally arrives

That makes Cameron the only director to manage three films above that $2 billion range – with the original Avatar and 1997’s Titanic also surpassing that threshold.

The milestone is even more impressive when you consider that only six films have surpassed it.

James Cameron attends National Geographic

James Cameron (Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP)

Rounding out the list are Avengers: Infinity War ($2.052 billion), Star Wars: The Force Awakens ($2.071 billion) and Avengers: Endgame ($2.798 billion) – all owned by production giant Disney.

Currently, Avatar: The Way Of Water has $2.024 billion in international earnings after releasing in December 2022.

Read more: Avatar: Will viewers experience “Pandora Retreat” again?

The film is believed to have cost between $350 and $460 million to produce.

While Avatar: The Way Of Water was undoubtedly a box office success, the film proved divisive with audiences and critics who either love it or hate it.

Avatar 2: The Way of Water (20th Century Studios)

Avatar 2: The Way of Water (20th Century Studios)

While the extravagant special effects were widely praised, the sequel seemed to have a similar story problem as its predecessor, especially given its three-hour running time.

As a result, reviews ranged from five stars to one star.

Read more: James Cameron admits his kids ‘aren’t huge fans’ of the first Avatar movie (exclusive)

Robbie Collin of The Telegraph gave the film one out of five stars, saying that watching the film “feels like being waterboarded with turquoise cement.”

In contrast, Empire magazine’s Nick De Semlyen gave Avatar five stars, celebrating it as a film that “reminds audiences of what cinema is capable of” and called the director “a master and commander of jaw-dropping.”

Cameron has at least three more films in the series planned, and actress Sigourney Weaver has confirmed that she has already read the scripts.

Avatar: The Way of the Water is in UK cinemas now.

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